Reference : Faces are represented holistically in the human occipito-temporal cortex
Scientific journals : Article
Social & behavioral sciences, psychology : Neurosciences & behavior
Social & behavioral sciences, psychology : Theoretical & cognitive psychology
Faces are represented holistically in the human occipito-temporal cortex
Schiltz, Christine mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Language and Literature, Humanities, Arts and Education (FLSHASE) > Educational Measurement and Applied Cognitive Science (EMACS) > ; Université Catholique de Louvain - UCL > Laboratoire de Neurophysiologie]
Rossion, Bruno []
Elsevier Science
Yes (verified by ORBilu)
[en] Face perception ; Visual system ; Fusiform gyrus ; Holistic processing ; Composite illusion ; fMRI
[en] Two identical top parts of a face photograph look different if their bottom parts differ. This perceptual illusion, the "face composite effect", is taken as strong evidence that faces are processed as a whole rather than as a collection of independent features. To test the hypothesis that areas responding preferentially to faces in the human brain represent faces holistically, we recorded functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during an adaptation paradigm with the composite face illusion. In both the middle fusiform gyrus (MFG) and the inferior occipital gyrus (IOG), we observed a significantly larger response to the same top face when it was aligned with different bottom parts than with the same bottom part, with a most robust effect in the right middle fusiform gyrus. This difference was not found when the top and the bottom face parts were spatially misaligned or when the faces were presented upside-down. These findings indicate that facial features are integrated into holistic face representations in areas of the human visual cortex responding preferentially to faces.

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